Cheltenham Festival Sale attracts high-class initial entries
Western Warhorse half-brother The Hollow Chap among standout lots
In a case of quality over quantity, the initial nine entries for the Tattersalls Ireland Cheltenham Festival Sale - due to take place in the winner's enclosure after racing on Thursday, March 15 - comprises a high-class bunch of winning pointers and form horses.
The Hollow Chap, a four-year-old son of Beat Hollow, jumps out on paper as a two-length winner of his Tinahely maiden in late February. He boasts a winning sibling at the meeting in Western Warhorse, who caused a 33-1 upset when getting the better of Champagne Fever in the 2014 Arkle.
Beat Hollow, who stands at Ballylinch Stud at a €6,000 fee, was also responsible for Napolean Blue, winner of a four-year-old maiden at Castletown-Geoghegan in October.
Meanwhile connections of impressive Cragmore maiden winner Down The Highway, a son of Duke Of Marmalade, will take heart at the record price paid for a five-year-old point-to-pointer at public auction last month, when Dlauro was knocked down to Joseph O'Brien for £410,000.
Duke Of Marmalade has also supplied Elgin, the Elite Racing Club-owned winner of the Kingwell Hurdle at Wincanton last month.
Moskovite should also attract her fair share of interest, having won a five-year-old mares maiden at Killeagh in mid-January and followed up in a Thurles bumper last month. The Flemensfirth mare is out of the high-class hurdler Moskova, a daughter of Montjeu.
For the first time this year, prospective buyers will be able to place bids from the owners and trainers pavilion, situated opposite the parade ring, as well as from the winner's enclosure.
Further entries will be added ahead of the sale, with no fewer than eight point-to-point fixtures set to take place in Ireland this weekend, including rescheduled meetings at Borris House and Lismore.
Tattersalls Ireland Cheltenham Festival Sale
Where/when Winner's enclosure, Cheltenham; sale commences at 6.15pm on Thursday, March 15; horses may be viewed in the RDA Stables from 10.30am to 6.30pm on March 14 and from 8.30am to 4pm on March 15, and in the pre-parade ring from 5.50pm on March 15
Sold last year From 24 offered, 21 sold for turnover of £3 million, an average of £142,857 and median of £120,000